Plan your fair choices, expect traffic, bring your wallet and wear comfortable shoes. It’s an art experience like no other in an urban tropic wonderland. Here’s a guide to what’s new for Art Basel 2017.
The biggest, wildest art fair week in the country is fast approaching. Art Basel Miami, the import fair that revved up the entire South Florida art scene takes place December 7-10 at the newly renovated Miami Beach Convention Center. Beyond the main fair there are dozens of satellite fairs, parties, outdoor art parks, and some fashionable benefits this year. The main fair itself has over 250 leading galleries from North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia and Africa showing significant work from the masters of Modern and contemporary art, as well the new generation of emerging stars.
Paintings, sculptures, installations, photographs, films, and editioned works of the highest quality are on display in the main exhibition hall.
What makes Art Basel Miami the biggest? It’s a unique combination of time, place and zeitgeist. Miami’s location – a major city but in the tropics certainly helps, as winter descends on the rest of the NY and European art world, a week of reveling in balmy temps on a world class beach is a no brainer. The timing is right too – with the advent of the internet, the art world can see instantly what is happening in Miami Beach, Wynwood and the Design District and want to be a part of it.
A lot of extremely deep pocketed collectors have settled here – Don and Mera Rubell, Martin Margulies, Jorge Perez – who have financed artists, museums and the art fairs. And art itself has become trendy – a world fueled by new ideas that brings in celebrities and attracts the luxury powered worlds of design, autos, jewelry, and fashion.
The Fair brings the world to Miami – no small feat and one that has become somewhat overwhelming in recent years as the city has experienced growing pains to accommodate the masses. Locals have reaped the rewards of increased business and interest in the city but suffer through gridlock and high prices. Fairgoers face a bewildering array of events, satellite fairs, parties and outdoor art to choose from. It has become impossible to see it all, so advance planning and a focus on what one wishes to get from the week is needed. And some don’t come for the art at all anymore.